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Pastoral Thanatology Program Article on Cancer and Dying

Dying of cancer is a terrible experience undoubtedly but what should someone expect and how can others help through this process

Please also review our Pastoral Thanatology Program

The article, What should I know about dying with cancer? states

Please also review our Pastoral Thanatology Program

Please also review our Pastoral Thanatology Program

 

“For all the world’s teachings on death and dying, the patient who doesn’t lament it for one reason or another is rare. Some people are unprepared to die. Others are worried about those left behind. Some are angry. Many are frightened. Not everyone is hungry for more life, but almost everyone at some point feels apprehensive about letting go. If you or someone you love is struggling with these issues, here are some tips to navigate the future.

Talk to your oncologist
Studies show that, when it comes to prognosis, oncologists and patients often have different interpretations of the information shared. One found that, while oncologists said they had discussed a poor prognosis, many patients felt that they’d not been made aware of it.

Your oncologist should be clear on your prognosis and what that means, but never be afraid to push for more information – it is both appropriate and valuable to ask your oncologist about what to expect. A lack of awareness or understanding of your prognosis could have major implications for acceptance and planning for the end of life.

In terms of details, dividing life expectancy into broad groups of days, weeks, months or years seems helpful for many people. Asking your doctor to describe what decline may look like can also be helpful, as can ­­getting an understanding of how people die from cancer, medically speaking – a question I’ve tackled here. If you are not sure how or what to ask, get help from your family doctor or palliative care nurse, who can help you write out some questions to take to your next appointment.”

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Please also review our Pastoral Thanatology Program

 

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